The Q&A Archives: Strawberries: Post Winter Care

Question: I have a 25x5 garden with 4 blueberries evenly spaced with strawberries spaced throughout the garden plot. For the winter I put straw on top of the strawberry plants as they were in October. Should I remove the straw? Let the plants poke their way out on their own? Leave the straw but clear around the plants?

The strawberry are the kind that produce fruit once a year and this is their second year, they were purchased from Burpees.


Answer: The strawberry plants are cold hardy but once the blossoms begin to open they are susceptible to freeze damage. It is important to allow the plants to gradually emerge from the mulch so that they are exposed to the sun and fresh air, but then protect the blossoms from the cold. Many gardeners will pull aside the mulch but keep it nearby so it can be tossed over the plants, or use floating row cover frost blankets, to protect the blossoms on cold nights. The mulch is also used then to keep weeds from getting a hold.

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